International Film Festival Of India (IFFI), the Central government-backed annual event held in Panaji, is gearing up to celebrate its golden jubilee this year. The festival, which will be held from November 20 till 28, will screen close to 250 films from different countries. This year, Russia is the festival’s partner country.
One of the highlights of the festival is a retrospective of Golden Peacock Award-winning films of the past 49 years. The section will showcase 8 films from 8 different countries, opening with Gamperaliya directed by Lester James Peries, the first Golden Peacock Award winner of 1965. Other films to be screened in this section are At Five in the Afternoon directed by Samira Makhmalbaf, Moner Manush directed by Goutam Ghose, Porfirio directed by Alejandro Landes, The Bostonians directed by James Ivory, The King of Masks by directed Tian Ming Wu, Tulpan directed by Sergei Dvortsevov and Leviathan directed by Andrey Zvyaginstev.
This year, John Bailey, cinematographer and former President of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences will chair the International Jury. French filmmaker Robin Campillo, who served as a member of the Cannes International Jury 2019, Chinese filmmaker Zhang Yang and British filmmaker Lynne Ramsay, will be the co-jurors. Filmmaker Ramesh Sippy is the Indian member of the International Jury. The International Competition of the festival consists of 15 movies out of which 2 of them are Indian – Mai Ghat: Crime No. 103/2005, directed by Anand Mahadevan, and Jallikattu directed by Lijo Jose Pellissery. In this competition section, films have been produced and co-produced by 22 countries.
In the debut films’ competition section of the festival, there are two Indian films – Gujarati film, Hellaro, directed by Abhishek Shah, which won a national award for the best feature film this year, and Malayalam film Uyare, directed by Manu Ashokan.
This year, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has also launched a ‘caravan’ of movies that will travel across cities like Hyderabad, Chennai, Bangalore, Mumbai, Kolkata, Guwahati and Thiruvananthapuram, and screen films. Other sideline events of the festival includes masterclasses by eminent film personalities from India and abroad, talk sessions, open air screenings, and the Film Bazaar which is organised by NFDC